We detected distinct taxonomic relationships among the true species, , all species, the type strain of , and members of Centers for Disease Control groups EF-4 and M-5. All these taxa constitute one large separate cluster having high levels of ribosomal ribonucleic acid cistron similarity (thermal denaturation temperature range, 74 to 81°C) in ribosomal ribonucleic acid superfamily III. There are at least four subbranches. We found high deoxyribonucleic acid (DNA)-DNA homology values between and some other true species and within the following species: , and . All of the members of this large cluster have genome base compositions in the range from 42.8 to 57.7 mol% guanine plus cytosine. The molecular complexities of the genomic DNAs are 2.2 x 10 to 2.7 x 10 for and species and 1.4 x 10 to 1.8 x 10 for the other members of this large cluster. We formally propose that this large cluster represents the emended family containing the following genera and groups: (not the generically misnamed ), (not some misnamed strains), and Centers for Disease Control groups EF-4 and M-5. The genera and subgenera , the false neisseriae, and should be removed from the , as they belong to superfamilies I and II.


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